WASHINGTON, D.C.—Congresswoman Kay Granger introduced the Helping HANDS for Autism Act, H.R.6282 along with Jim McGovern, MA; Chris Smith, NJ; Mike Doyle, PA; Dan Burton, IN; and Ruben Hinojosa, TX to increase public awareness, help families access the treatment and services they need, and also provide adult services for individuals with autism.
“The increase of children being diagnosed with autism is alarming. More needs to be done to get a handle on this disorder.  As a legislator and a parent with grown children starting to have children I want the scientists and doctors studying this disorder to have all the resources necessary to combat this increasing problem.”
Since autism was first described 60 years ago, the prevalence of autism has dramatically increased.  Autism spectrum disorders will be diagnosed in more than 25,000 U.S. children this year.  Scientists and doctors still know very little about the neurological disorder, but most agree that early intervention is key.
Too often families feel overwhelmed after diagnosis and lost as to where to turn for help.  That is why I have introduced the Helping HANDS for Autism Act which creates a grant program to provide “autism navigator” services to help families navigate the web of services and care.  Navigators will help guide families to current health, education, housing and social services that are often available.  The program will help connect families to important treatment options soon after diagnosis, help families identify education options, help coordinate individuals’ care and community support.
The Helping HANDS for Autism Act, H.R. 6282 is a three-part legislative package designed not only to support families dealing with autism spectrum disorders but also to increase public awareness and provide adult services for individuals with autism.